the european union collect the nobel peace prize in oslo. >> the thousands of jobs under threat. carmaker opel halts production at one of its biggest plants in germany. >> and will he or won't he -- mario monti's back and forth on resignation casts uncertainty over italy's economic and political future. >> we begin the show with what has been a day of celebration for the european union. >> the three senior figures representing the eu have been in the norwegian capital, oslo, to collect the nobel peace prize. it was awarded to the 27-member bloc for six decades of promoting peace, democracy, and human rights. >> however, not everyone is happy. some have asked whether the
price is justified at that time when the eu is mired in economic and financial -- the prize is justified at that time when the eu is mired in economic and financial crisis. desmond tutu says it is an organization based on military force. >> coveted award was accepted with pride by the eu's 3 president, martin schulz, herman van rompuy, and jose manuel barroso. the standing ovation they received was a rare accolade for the eu in these tough economic times. >> in light of the financial crisis that is affecting so many innocent people, we can see that the political framework in which the union is rooted is more important than ever. we must stand together. we have a collective responsibility. without this european cooperation, there is -- there
is a risk that the ground gained would be lost. >> he said the achievement of lasting german-french reconciliation was a powerful symbol of the european union's success. the leaders of the countries, angela merkel and francois hollande, stood up together in a gesture of unity, prompting more applause. later, barroso priase -- paised the eu's -- praised the eu's democratic principles. >> it is based on the free consent of states to share sovereignty. >> van rompuy said the states should remember those principles now during the debt crisis. he also expressed pride in being a european in his non-native language of german. not all european leaders were there to share the glory. british prime minister david cameron was notably absent.
>> we're joined here in the studio by a political scientist from the european council on foreign relations. i would like to ask you to map out for us the reasons why the you got this very prestigious prize -- the eu is very prestigious prize. >> it is the only institution that managed the transition from several non-democracies to democracy. it is the first revolution in history without blood. i think that is largely worth the nobel prize, not counting the decades before or after 1949. >> some say this award is not justified. what do you say to this criticism? >> i think if we're in a crisis in your opinion now -- the european union now, it should not avoid looking at the merits of the past.
look back. obama -- many people were saying he did not deserve the nobel peace prize, but he deserved it because it was a statement that now the u.s. is shifting back from the bush administration to obama. i think the same is true for the european union. >> your assessment has been pretty upbeat so far. i want to put this to you. at the top of the show, we said this is a day of celebration for the eu. no doubt about that. it also indicates it might be a day of celebration for the people of the eu, but i see no signs of those citizens cracky -- cracking open the champagne bottles today. >> it is unfortunate. we should see youngsters out there. we should see the you celebrating. i agree that it is unfortunate that we are not even able to celebrate what we have been living and experiencing for 60 years, which is prosperity and
peace for everybody. i can berkeley understand that the current crisis destroys this -- i can understand that the current crisis destroys this. looking back, my family, many other families -- people had nothing to eat. they were freezing in the cold. just that should make it worth thinking back and open the bottles of champagne. >> thank you for those interesting, personal impressions. let's move on now from the peace prize. the remaining nobel prizes for medicine, physics, chemistry, economics, and literature have been awarded in the swedish capital. >> there has been considerable controversy over this year's literature prize, which has gone to a chinese writer, mo yan. critics have accused him of being too close to the government in beijing.
it is every writer's dream. 57-year-old mo yan was presented prize for literature by the swedish king. the academy praised his works for combining hallucinatory realism with chinese folk tales from a history, and contemporary life. but it was a controversial decision. critics accuse mo of acting as a mouthpiece for the chinese government. the author sparked controversy at reading recently when he compared censorship in his country to the inconvenient, but necessary security checks at airports. the awards or medicine, physics, chemistry, and economics went to eight winners from the u.s., japan, france, and britain. >> the nobel prize for economics was jointly awarded to allan ross and lloyd shapley for their work on matching supply and demand -- alvin roth and lloyd shapley for their work on matching supply and demand. 89-year-old lloyd shapley,
professor emeritus at the university of california, received a standing ovation. >> while the eu is celebrating winning the nobel peace prize, one of its largest member states has been plunged into crisis. >> first data appeared that italy was facing the prospect -- first, it appeared that italy was facing the prospect of uncertainty as mario monti appeared to be on the prospect of resigning. that pushed the stock market into a downward slide. >> in the last couple of hours, prime minister mario monti has come out and said he is not planning to step down in the near future after all, and that the nervous reaction in the markets should not be dramatized. >> investors are already nervous about what mario monti's early departure could spell for the eurozone. his tough 2013 budget, targeting a deficit of just 1.8% of gdp, is expected to pass by christmas.
the financial reformer postretirement would effectively move italy's next election forward by just -- reformer's retirement would effectively move italy's next election forward by just a month or two. berlusconi announced he would run again for prime minister. in a newspaper interview, the head of the euro bailout fund said that could mean more financial trouble ahead for italy and for the eurozone. italy has pushed through important reforms in the past year, he said. markets have honored this so far. however, they have acted with concern to the recent developments at the end of last week. u.s. ratings agency standard and poor's also expressed doubts about whether italy passed next government would remain committed to the next reforms -- italy's's next government would remain committed to the end -- italy's next government would remain committed to the reforms.
>> our correspondents and does this report from the frankfurt stock exchange -- our correspondent sent us this report from the frankfurt stock exchange. >> traders have been disappointed. they have to wait another day until they get to know the outcome of the greek program. uncertainty always drags down shares, not only of traders -- if traders and investors look at greece today are watching the problems in italy. the news that mario monti will step down really dragged down the mood. >> let's take a quick look at some market numbers. the dax closed just a tad out at 7530. the euro stoxx 50 ended the day almost 1/4 of 1% down. across the atlantic, the dow jones is currently going up just a tad. the euro is trading for 1.2934.
>> 7.2 magnitude earthquake has struck off the coast of indonesia. reports saying it hit off shore of -- about 200 kilometers northwest of those islands. >> no tsunami warning has been issued. the usgs said the quake was reported at a depth of 158 kilometers. indonesia's's position within the ring of fire makes it prone to it -- indonesia's position within the ring of fire makes it prone to earthquakes. travelers have another nasty surprise waiting for them this morning -- and announced -- an unannounced strike by security workers. that caused several flights to be cancelled. >> frankfurt was particularly hard hit. today's strike complicated
cleanup efforts from a recent bout of pretty harsh winter weather. german exports surged to a new high in october. >> the german companies sold almost 100 billion euros in goods and services in the month, up almost 10% compared to last year. it is not all good news. fewer orders from europe caused germany's trade surplus to drop to its lowest level in the last six months, adding to fears that europe's largest economy will contract in the fourth quarter. more bad news from germany's struggling automaker opel. the european division of general motors says it is shutting down its plant in the western german city of bochum. >> opel has been struggling to remain competitive. but it is a bitter pill for the workers to swallow. some 3000 jobs are at stake.
>> the writing was on the wall. the 3000 workers at the plant in bochum did not hide their frustration as they emerged from the meeting called by management this morning. >> we expected as much. at least the news is out now. >> it really was high time mr. sedran put his cards on the table. for the last year-and-a-half, nobody has been straight with us. >> it is pretty disgraceful. >> opel chief executive thomas sedran got straight to the point when he explained the reasons for halting production. >> the reason behind this is a local decision is the dramatic fall in demand -- the reason behind this difficult decision is the dramatic fall in demand. >> currently, the plant manufactures opel's family model, zafira. from 2016 on, the plant will
only do car parts and logistics. it is not clear how many jobs opel plans to shed. >> our correspondent has been following this story. automakers in germany have been doing surprisingly well, despite the debt crisis and the general economic downturn. is opel a unique case or a harbinger of a downturn for the sector? >> opel has been a problem child for some years. it had been struggling even prior to the economic crisis that began in 2008, and it got a lot worse after that. it wound entailing visits to the u.s. by high-level german politicians seeking to rescue the company. the fact is german automakers across the board are looking at a downturn because of the breakaway of southern european markets. that hit opel especially hard. even companies like daimler and porsche say they will be
downgrading their forecasts for the coming year. at the moment, berlin is saying is not one to try to rescue opel once again, but we do have an election year coming up in 2013. perhaps that could change. >> thank you so much for that. >> we will be back very shortly. we will be looking at human rights in afghanistan. we will get the latest from egypt. we will revisit that nobel prize for the european union. barack it is un's human rights day. we will take a closer look at that as well. stick around.
those prizes were handed out today in stockholm. >> but the spotlight has been on the eu leaders who accepted the peace prize on behalf of the citizens of europe. our brussels correspondent asked of you eu -- asked a few eu citizens what the prize means to them. >> these students come from every corner of the eu, bringing an adverse mix of languages and cultures -- bringing a diverse mix of languages and cultures. >> it is something that confirms the fact that the eu has greater importance in many things, especially in a moral context, morals, values. italy, we take things for granted, how we live -- usually, we take things for granted, how
we live, the way things are. >> with the debt crisis still looming, they feel the award sends an important message. they hope it will encourage politicians to focus on the european perspective. >> i like to think of our school as a microcosm of europe. we need people every day from other nations, and have to switch -- we meet people every day from other nations. it is european in change in one school -- european exchange in one school, and that is a good thing. >> the european union rose from the ruins of postwar europe. the goal, a unified and peaceful europe, brought together many former enemies. the eu started as an economic union to help member states secure access to coal and steel. many leading politicians hoped common economic interests would ensure peace on the war-torn continent.
>> if you look at european history with its battles and civil wars and millions dead, then the eu is an incredible achievement and it is important to preserve this achievement for the future. >> the fall of the berlin wall helped unite europe even more. 10 former east bloc countries had already joined the eu, not only in the hope of greater prosperity. ideals like democracy and human rights have also played a part. the euro made the union tangible to many europeans, even if some see it as a youth -- as a symbol of the eu's identity crisis. >> i would not claim that the european union is perfect in any way. but in my opinion, it is the best development in the world since the end of the second world war. >> students at the european school -- at this european
school view it as a challenge for the younger generation to guard the european union. >> maybe when the students become politicians, they will behave differently than those who were only for their own national interests -- who work only for their own national interests. >> this is a prize for the younger generations. >> they agree that the debate surrounding the future of the eu helps bring the students together. but embracing a united europe requires courage. they hope they are up to the challenge, much like the founders of the eu. >> meanwhile, one of the four winners of the 2012 right livelihood awaraward, also knows the alternative nobel, called on
the international community to stay committed to building a civil society in afghanistan after the withdrawal of myths -- of military forces at the end of 2014. >> that we took on added relevance when news came through the provincial -- that plea took on added relevance when news came through that a provincial police chief and a human rights activist were killed. >> 116 girls schools were founded in afghanistan in the last decade, medical treatment has also improved. much of the progress is due to sima samar, the head of afghanistan's human rights commission. she is praised by her colleagues as a strong voice for women's rights in her country. >> we have equal rights in the constitution. but there is still -- i have to say there is a long way to go in order to have a full equality
in afghanistan. >> sima samar as a concrete request for when she meets the french defense minister -- sima samar has a concrete request for when she meets the french defense minister, thomas de maiziere. she is calling for the international community not abandon with -- abandon afghanistan as they withdraw their troops. according to samar, the first steps have been made to introducing democracy and women's rights to the afghan people. >> the german government has export -- has expelled people from the syrian embassy, part of a move to -- >> syria pass -- syria's ambassador was expelled in may. they believe the regime may soon
collapse. germany has yet to recognize the opposition national coalition as the sole legitimate recognition -- representative of the syrian people. the political unrest in egypt is showing no signs of dying down. egyptian president mohamed morsi has given the military order to maintain security and protect the state institutions in the run-up to the referendum on a new constitution. the army has also been given the power of arrest. >> this comes as the country braces for more mass protests by all of it -- by opposition groups. president morsi lifted the decree expanding his presidential powers, but that has done little to calm the political unrest. and these soldiers stationed outside the political palace have new powers. >> the egyptian military now has the right to arrest civilians. another setback for the protesters camped out here day and night. president morsi has another decree -- has been told the
decree giving him sweeping powers, but demonstrators -- president morsi has an old -- has annulled the decree. >> nothing has changed. he is playing games with us and trying to buy time, but we are sticking to our opposition and will reject the accord -- the referendum. >> but now that police powers have been transferred to the army, any hope of blocking the constitution is looking less likely than ever. the military's primary task is to ensure the referendum on saturday runs smoothly. president morsi can expect majority support for it. >> still to come, on the united nations human rights day, musicians from haiti find a special way to make their voices heard. >> first, a look at some other stories making headlines.
but a suicide attack in northwest pakistan has killed at least six police officers and local residents. security officials say taliban suicide bombers targeted a police station in the volatile waziristan region, near the border to afghanistan. >> north korea has postponed its controversial -- range rocket launch. pyongyang says a technical deficiency was behind the delay, but it plans to go ahead with the test by the end of the month, despite condemnation from the international community. >> serbia and kosovo are jointly operating two new border crossings. serbia does not recognize kosovo as an independent state. border controls have been under dispute for years. but serbia has now reached a deal with its neighbor as a pre- condition for eu membership. >> monday marked the u.n.'s human rights day.
the high commissioner for human rights supports people's campaign for the right to be included in the public lives of their community. >> they are highlighting the struggle of millions of people worldwide to have their fundamental rights respected, including their right to have a voice. >> hatian -- haitian musicians found a special way to have their voice heard. >> they are in geneva to take part in the festivities. for the u.n.'s high commissioner of human rights, the ability to participate, work together, and have your voice heard are rights that everyone should exercise freely. >> i particularly have been inspired by what has happened in the streets of egypt, north africa, the middle east, as well as the occupy wall street protest, where people have come out in huge numbers, asking for
their civil and political rights, achill -- economic, social, cultural rights. >> being heard often start small. in this kenyan village, the chief uses twitter to communicate with residents. he says it has made the running of the community much smoother. >> i believe that is the best example. we find that those people are the grassroots. those people in the villages, they don't know about technology. they have been suffering. >> it also means his friends back home can follow him on his dirty to geneva, despite the difference -- on his journey to geneva, despite the differences -- distance. >> that's it for "journal." >> find more at www.dw.de.